Tuesday, October 31, 2006

From angels to butterflies to princesses

4 weeks

13 months

25 months

Happy Halloween

(pics: David & Ella waiting for the bus, Lincoln Square, Halloween)

We have been keeping busy with Fall/Halloween activities with our little Sleeping Beauty. These pictures were taken in Lincoln Square--which in my opinion is the most "European" place in Chicago. It's a nice small square with no traffic, a fountain, and alot of pigeons. We walk through here every week on our way to French music class, and often stop and play for awhile on our way home. This was the last week with the fountain, it's now turned off for the winter. Ella loves to chase the "yucky birds" and say "go away". Yes, we taught her that! They are rats with wings you know.

Yesterday we spent most of the day outdoors since it was around 65 degrees! Just one day of warmth though, now back to normal--but still not bad, and definitely not winter yet. Of course David has been ecstatic since the Cardinals won the world series. David's brother Jeff came up and stayed with us Sunday night and delivered him a World Champions t-shirt. Ella was excited to have Uncle Jeff here for a night to play with her. We were excited that Uncle Jeff got to read Adam and Eve instead of us. This seems to be Ella's favorite Bible story right now. I think it's because she relates to the disobeying part so well :-)

Many of you have asked for an update on Raney. She is still taking her radiation treatments, which are exhausting her, and she's been on the Tarceva for a week now, which is causing some uncomfortable side effects. They will re-scan her in another week or two to try and determine if the treatment is working. Please continue to pray for her and her family.

Last week I was able to attend a private class with Paula Robison- a very renowned flutist. It was wonderful to attend, (even if it was a room full of catty flutists) and to have a 7 hour break from Ella! Thank you David. :-)

Also, my first sewing project is a hem and button away from being completed!

Well, we hope to hear from you all soon.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Let's fund lung cancer research!

Click here, per Raney's request, to e-sign and mail a petition to increase governmental funding for lung cancer research. Raney is trying to do all she can to help with this terrible disease she now has. The statistics of dollars spent on research per death compared with other cancers are quite low. Please help--it will only take a moment to enter your name and address to have the petition mailed to your government reps.
Thanks to everyone.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Family News

[Photo: Raney, Jaren, Conor]
My cousin Raney has just been diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). She is NOT a smoker, and has not been exposed to excessive amounts of second hand smoke. Unfortunately, when they discovered this 7 days ago, there were several locations in her body where the cancer has already spread. She has begun radiation treatments, and will begin taking a drug called Tarceva in the next few days. Tarceva is a "targeted treatment", unlike traditional chemotherapy, it's also a fairly new drug and has minimal side effects, and has shown great results in young female non-smokers with NSCLC. Thankfully, with the efforts of my Aunt Faith and Uncle Jesse (Jesse is a Dr. at the Mayo Clinic), Raney is receiving quality care at the Mayo Clinic there in Scottsdale.

Please pray for Raney, her husband Chris and their two sons: Jaren -Age 4, and Conor who is almost eight weeks old. We look forward to getting to see Raney and her family at Thanksgiving when we are in Phoenix.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Caption this photo

Friday, October 06, 2006

More birthday pictures

Gabriella Turns Two!

Well we have survived the 2nd birthday of our dear daughter. It's hard to believe she's two years old already. We had an unexpected beautiful day for her picnic birthday party at the playground. Most of her friends were there and Aunt Marion came up from St. Louis (Uncle Jeff came too but unfortunately didn't arrive until after the party). Ella had her pink papillon cake as requested, and seems to think that everyone wants a papillon cake for their birthday! She also got a huge Dora balloon that was as tall as she is and a papillon balloon. David and I gave her a play kitchen and she could hardly sleep for the first few days because of thinking about playing with it. We brag about finding it on e-bay for local pick-up and paying very, very, little for it. :-)

For those of you that don't recall, we have David's birthday, our anniversary and Ella's birthday three days in a row (9-27, 28, 29). Our "celebration" week was busy, stressful and fun. David's birthday consisted of a home-cooked dinner and Eli's cheesecake and by Tuesday we decided to postpone our 5th anniversary celebration until a later date. Ella took the spotlight as expected. The two year pediatrician check-up was on Monday and Dr. Clark said Ella is "absolutely wonderfully perfect". For those of you interested in such things, she weighed in at 28 pounds and is 36 1/4" long--just barely on the chart for height now (previously off). In addition to the expected blood check for lead and hemoglobin, she received her flu shot and the new CDC recommended but not required Hepatitis A vaccine. Due to Ella's constant contact with CTA germs, we decided to go ahead and have her get this vaccine even though it's not yet required by the state of Illinois for entry into school.

Speaking of the CTA, I've about had it with riding the buses and trains all the time. My specific complaint is with the 81 bus (unlike my Aunt and Uncle that just visited who had issues with the 55 bus!). As it took us two hours and forty minutes round trip to attend music class on Wednesday, I had to keep reminding myself of all the other women with multiple children in tow that are also condemned to the CTA for transportation. Enough complaining.

So just before Ella's birthday my Aunt Faith, Uncle Jesse and cousin Caelin were here for the weekend from Scottsdale. They came to visit their son Alex who is a Sophomore at University of Chicago. Jesse, a huge fan of asian food, once again loved being in Chicago where you can get it so readily. We went out for Vietnamese food with them and Ella of course told the waiter she'd like "Wonton soup with a big spoon" "please". Ella also received her very own "big spoon" for her birthday. (I'm referring to the asian style soup spoons).

We were able to sell some unused designer furniture and purchase a new camera with the proceeds. Enjoy the pictures of the birthday celebration and one with cousin Caelin and more in the future.